A Spicy Lawsuit

Fiery smell

Imagine having a backyard party planned and on the day of the festivities you are forced to bring the party inside due to something in the air that is causing all different types of discomfort for you and your guest? Well that is what happened to one family in Irwindale, CA who were celebrating a birthday party and they were migrated involuntarily indoors due to a strong smell that overwhelmed them. This smell was due to the air from Sriracha hot sauce factory which is supposedly contaminating  the air in and around Southern California. The city of Irwindale filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court asking a judge to stop production at the Huy Fong Foods factory. The city is alleging the chili odor originating from the plant is a public nuisance.

The company has been operating out of the two buildings since the late 1980s, but recently in 2013 opened a large factory in Irwindale. According to city officials  they say residents have been making complaints of irritated throats, burning eyes and headaches. There also have been people that have vacated their house to avoid the smell.  Initially, Huy Fong was complying with the city, but then company representatives denied there was an odor problem. They were stating that their employees worked in similar olfactory settings without complaint, said Irwindale City Attorney Fred Galante.

Irwindale is pursuing temporary closure of the factory. The overall goal is for Huy Fong to submit a plan to minimize the order before it is able to reopen its factory doors. “If they fix it and the odor problems stop, we don’t need this order; but so far the odor complaints continue,” Galante said. All in all, I hope that residents of Irwindale will be able to enjoy their backyards and the outside weather soon with out discomfort. Huy Fong’s Sriracha hot sauce is immensely popular in restaurants and is a well know condiment around the world. I’m sure they would like to remain that way and not have something that could be a fixable issue damage their name.